St Maddan's Chapel, Freswick, Canisbay

Grid reference

ND 377 671 (accurate position)

Six-figure easting & northing

337700 967100





Altitude (metres)




Nearby places

Stacks of Martin's Sclaite, Canisbay (1.31 miles)

Ladykirk, eccles. Canisbay (3.95 miles)

St Drostan's Kirk, Canisbay (4.12 miles)

Canisbay, parish (4.12 miles)

St John's Chapel, Canisbay (6.42 miles)

Object Classification



Is linear feature?



NMRS records the erection of a mausoleum in about 1670 by Sir William Sinclair on the site of an earlier chapel. for this site: 'About 1670 Sir William Sinclair erected on the site of a chapel a mausoleum which has been in decay since the 19th century. A vault beneath this is said to have been associated with the old chapel, and human bones have been found in the area of what was presumably the churchyard. The saint to whom the chapel was dedicated is not known (Watson 1926) but, as Beaton gives the alternative names Moden, Maddon or Medon, and says that the chapel was the scene of 'superstitous rites' on Candlemas Day (2nd February), it seems possible that the saint in question might be the Modan whose day was February 4th.' NMRS records various forms of the name (Moden, Maddon or Medon) and Beaton's description of 'superstitious rites' on Candlemas Day (2nd February), suggesting that the saint culted here was Modan, whose feast is 4th February. However, the forms St Medins and St Maddan's are not necessarily best explained by a devotion to Modan. Geog. Coll. i, 153 (circa 1724) records, '... where ane old popish chappel stood, that in very late times was much resorted to by ignorant and superstitious people, who by devotions and offerings made to the St., expected recovery of their health.'

Relationships with other parishes

Within Canisbay, parish